Schizophrenia is a chronic neurological brain disorder that affects approximately 2.6 million adults in the United States alone. This condition affects twenty million people worldwide according to the World Health Organization. “Patients with schizophrenia often die at a considerably younger age than the rest of the population,” (Wallace, 2017). The treatment of this condition is complex because of the array of different symptoms and presented behaviors. Treatment consists of targeting the symptoms. This is done with medication and psychotherapeutics treatments. ‘Despite continued therapeutic advances, the life expectancy of patients with schizophrenia is reduced by approximately 10-25 years compared to that of healthy individuals,” (Patel et al, 2014).
“Medication nonadherence is main reason for relapse and hospitalization,” (Schultz et al, 2019). According to the NCBI, nonadherence in schizophrenia patients is about 50%. This nonadherence is partly due to the symptoms of the disorder. Some schizophrenics suffer from severe paranoia and distrust. This will cause patients to stop taking medication and stop treatment. This behavior will lead to an increase in symptoms, a poorer quality of life, and in many cases homelessness. This population is a strain on their families and the medical system. Schizophrenia costs society more than $155 billion annually (Wander, 2020). An additional treatment monitoring modality needs to be implemented to further aid in the patients care and decrease the costs of rehospitalization. Telemedicine has opened a wide range of monitoring opportunities for schizophrenia patients. There I recommend the implementation of telemedicine in the form of weekly phone calls, video chats, and/or text messages to monitor and assess the patient's wellbeing before a hospitalization is required.
Date of publication
MSN Capstone Project
Williams, Stacy H., "Telemedicine in Schizophrenia" (2021). MSN Capstone Projects. Paper 116.